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Dallas Police Task Force Targets Drug Houses

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DALLAS (CBS 11 NEWS) - The trouble on Dasch Street began more than a year ago.

An elderly woman died and strangers moved into her home.

“I think almost all the neighbors around this house have called police,” said Juanita Banda, a mother of three living two houses down.  “They were walking down the street late at night showing guns off. There were vehicles driven in the back that we figured were stolen.”

Banda said, she stopped letting her kids go outside.

Across the street, Hector Campos installed security cameras.

“We called the police many times,” he said.

But, neighbors say the problems persisted, until last month, when police swept in and made arrests.

In May, Dallas police launched a drug house task force with 46 officers dedicated entirely to responding to neighborhood complaints.

In less than three months, they’ve knocked on 314 suspected drug house doors, made 350 arrests, and seized 90 guns, nearly half a million dollars in cash, and 364 pounds of drugs.

Suspected drug house targeted by Dallas Police (credit: CBS 11 News).

Suspected drug house targeted by Dallas Police (credit: CBS 11 News).

Major Santos Cadena heads up the task force.

“We’ve encountered persons wanted for aggravated assault, aggravated assault, aggravated robbery, burglary, identity theft, so they’re engaged in a variety of criminal activity, not just drug use.”

Dallas police say the focus on drug houses is already making an impact.

“We were not safe – feeling not safe – because they were crazy,” said 12 year old Victoria Lozano, who lives across from a suspected drug house on Wofford Street.

The neighbors who kept her up at night with their loud, late night activities disappeared last week after a police raid.

“Police come and they broke the door,” said her mother, Leticia Soriano

The neighborhood is quieter now, and sleep comes much more easily.

To file a complaint with the task force, you can call Dallas police, contact your neighborhood crime watch, or write a report on iWatch Dallas.

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